BMW is presenting No. IAA Mobility 2021 in Munich a new concept of electric car, 100% recyclable and made from sustainable materials. The compact four-seat i Vision Circular is designed for the year 2040 and focuses on sustainability and luxury.

BMW concept car
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As the name suggests, the car was designed using principles of economy circular, namely: Re-Think, Re-Duce, Re-Use and Re-Cycle (rethink, reduce, reuse and recycle, respectively). The i Vision Circular is the first concept of five, symbolizing the BMW Group's future plans for sustainability in the premium individual mobility space.

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However, Oliver Zipse, head of BMW claims that the vehicle is just a conceptual study. Thus, the car does not offer a "first taste" of the language design Neue Klasse, which will be introduced in the company's EVs from 2025.

100% recyclable

front of i Vision Circular
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The car's design is entirely developed with recyclable material. Including the solid electrolyte battery, which BMW says has higher energy density than today's lithium-ion packs and reduces the use of valuable resources.

In size, the i Vision Circular is similar to the current BMW i3 (first 100% electric model sold in Brazil). The car takes on an entirely new shape for a BMW, mixing SUV and MPV elements.

BMW concept car being unveiled at IAA Mobility
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The “reduce” part of the briefing refers to reducing the number of parts, components, materials and surface finishes. This includes the exterior, with BMW's traditional kidney grille being replaced (rethought?) by a digital graphic surface that incorporates the headlights.

the body is made aluminum secondary and is unpainted, to further reduce the use of materials. This aluminum is anodized to a light gold finish, which contrasts with a heat-treated steel surface on the back.

i Vision Circular top image
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A panoramic glass roof helps increase the amount of light inside, and at the rear there is a door of glass Dimmed, which adopts a single LED light bar. The doors act as a portal, opening on either side in opposite directions to provide access to the interior.

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image of how the concept car doors open
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The wheels of the i Vision Circular are pushed to the edges to maximize usable interior space. They match the design of the lighthouse and the grid with fine rays. The tires, in turn, are made from sustainably grown natural rubber.

Luxury and sustainability

The car's interior aims to combine luxurious design with sustainable materials and production processes. This concept area features four seats designed to look more like a decoration domestic than with traditional car seats. They have an aluminum frame and recycled plastic upholstery.

i Vision on the inside with an emphasis on the upholstery
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The instrument's display is a new interpretation of what BMW calls a “phygital” experience (a mix of physical and digital). In it, the printed V-shaped panel in 3D extends into the cabin. Here we have a crystal body with structures similar to nerves that run through it and a lighting effect and its finish is made with elements of treated wood.

BMW illustration of the interior of the i Vision Circular concept
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Instruments are relocated from behind the steering wheel to a head-up display on the underside of the i Vision Circular windshield. It's allowed to the driver move the elements according to your preference, through interactive pads mounted on the 3D printed steering wheel. A new digital sound system design is also introduced.

i Vision Circular from the back
Disclosure/BMW

BMW has not given any technical information about the i Vision Circular, such as power or range, due to its positioning as a concept geared towards or future. The company has confirmed, however, that the car is intended to be compatible with vehicle-to-network systems such as two-way charging and data-based smart mobility systems.

Although BMW insists there are no production plans for the i Vision Circular, it is likely that some of the design details and underlying circular economy principles will be used in its future EVs. THE is planning to roll out 12 new electric cars globally by 2023, before the radically different Neue Klasse generation of EVs starts arriving in 2025.

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